ST FRANCIS BAY, Eastern Cape – Rupert Kaminski stayed calm and centred through a gruelling and testing final day of the SA PGA Championship at the St Francis Links on Saturday, holding off Matthew Spacey, who stayed in contact with him the whole day, to claim victory by one shot and make his first Sunshine Tour title a big one.

With extreme winds expected on Sunday, Saturday was a race against time to get the tournament finished with both the third and fourth rounds being played, with three-balls going off at the same time in shotgun starts.

Kaminski and Spacey both fired terrific six-under-par 66s in the third round in the morning to close to within one stroke of leader Peter Karmis (71) on nine-under-par.

In the afternoon, it became a two-horse race as Kaminski, who teed off on the first hole, and Spacey, who set off on the 18th, separated themselves from the field. Karmis could only manage a 77 in the final round, finishing on four-under and in a tie for third with Ryan van Velzen (72) and Adam Breen (73).

Spacey had a troubled start with two bogeys in his first four holes, while Kaminski played sublime golf on the front nine, with three birdies in the first six holes.

Spacey fought back though with birdies on the par-four 12thand par-three 14th holes, while Kaminski made a couple of bogeys coming home.

Kaminski parred the last though for a level-par 72, while Spacey fell agonisingly short with bogeys on the par-four 15th and on the par-three 17th, his closing hole.

“I’m still extremely overwhelmed and I don’t think it’s ever going to really sink in. I’m blown away with the way I played and it’s such a privilege for me to lift this prestigious trophy,” Kaminski said some time after his triumph.

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